I have been struggling with suicidal thoughts and attempted once. I don’t have a very strong support system, and the ones I have, I am not able to contact. I do not entirely understand the reasons for these thoughts, but I think it is because of my traumatic past. my dad and mom are both abusive: physically and sexually. I was sexually abused by my dad when I was about 9 or 10. I don’t feel safe by myself all the time, and need advice on how to make sure that I am safe.
- Thank you for reaching out and sharing your struggle with the Teen Central community! We’re so glad you’re here and want you to know YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!
- There is ALWAYS SOMEONE YOU CAN TALK TO 24/7. Just call 1-800-273-8255 or text HELLO to 741741. If you are having thoughts of suicide or feeling overwhelmed or hopeless, do not hesitate. Just call. Put these two numbers in your phone or in a safe place that you can easily find them if you need them. You can also contact them on your computer using these links: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ and http://www.crisistextline.org/.
- Can you think of someone in your daily life that you can talk to right away? Someone in your house, or a trusted friend, neighbor, teacher? Having a good support system is a really important part of staying safe and it can feel really good to have someone just listen to you.
- Check out the Support Plan in LEARN to help you stay safe. Use the link here – https://teencentral.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/My-Support-Plan.pdf or find it in the TOOLS section. A good plan will be easy to find, simple and include the information you need (like who to talk to, how to reach them, and what to do) so you don’t have to think about anything when you’re in crisis. Make sure you let the people in your plan know that you are including them, and tell them what you need from them when you’re feeling unsafe. If you feel comfortable, consider sharing your support plan with them.
- Have you ever put together a “Live For This” box? Take any box (shoebox, etc.), decorate it and whenever you think of something to live for, put it in the box. This could be a picture of someone, a drawing, a small piece of paper you write something on, the name of a song you love to listen to, a memento of a fun activity – anything that means something to you. Keep the box someplace easy to find. Then, when you’re having a hard time, take out the box and go through each item. Don’t debate why that item is in there, just trust yourself that it’s important and you put it there for a reason.
- How do you take care of yourself? It’s easy to use all of our energy on daily tasks, but it’s also really important to do things that help us feel calm and peaceful to balance the stress of daily life and memories of a painful past. Check out LEARN (WELLNESS) for information about Relaxation, WHAT’S NEW for using Art as a Coping Skill as well as Journaling, and TOOLS for guidance about using yoga and meditation. Consider taking 10 minutes to do an activity that is fun, pleasant and relaxing. Challenge yourself to do this every day and pay attention to how this time makes you feel. If you feel even a little better at the end of those 10 minutes – GREAT! Keep going – we need you to be here.